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4.8 out of 5 stars20
4.8 out of 5 stars
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on 1 January 2013
This well written book gives the reader an understanding of how the world could have been different, had we invented a time machine and changed the way banking worked.

Having been misled by books and documentaries before, I tend to be quite skeptical, and like to point out anything that I find suspicious. I did notice, right at the beginning that the author writes about his own business being the "world's leading" in its category. So, right from the start I had this concern that his book may not be more than a marketing tool for his business.

As I read further I began to like the author more. He certainly has done a lot of research, and seems to have organized his thoughts very well. He also does explain that his business is "for profit," and the fact that he's advertising his business through the book doesn't detract from it being a very interesting book to read.

Simon also points out that he thinks a lot of economists will disagree with what he has to say, and "that is OK; as long as we are respectful to each other, we can engage in productive debate." Personally I think that debate is a waste of time, and that we should instead be trying to learn together, but Simon's saying this does make it seem that he's considered counter arguments to his thoughts.

The interesting thing is that every single review written before mine gives Simon a five star rating. This means either that NONE of these economists has bothered to read and review his book, or that they don't actually disagree.

What I would really like to see is a computer simulation, showing how money reform can affect the world. That would be a lot easier to understand or explain than reading, or getting someone to read, an entire book. Of course, since books are all we have, this seems to be a good one to read.

The end of the book is very positive, but I won't spoil it for you. Go ahead and read it for yourself.

Stephen Oberauer
Author of The Mischievous Nerd's Guide to World Domination
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on 13 November 2013
I bought this book because I wanted to find out Simon's views on the future of banking & finance and the economy in general.

We definitely know that the economy is not in good shape right now when Sir Mervyn King, former Governor of the Bank of England, stated that 'Of all the many ways of organising banking, the worst is the one we have today.'

I bet that not too many people know that any private bank can create money electronically.

Even though the average person may not take a deep interest in economics in general, they should find out the reasons the economy goes through the continuous cycles of boom and bust.

The first part goes how times have changed, people's attitudes to towards to economy across different generations, the 'free economy' we are living in right now and the reasons why the booms and busts happen in the economy. The second part outlines the 7 things that make the 'free economy' possible and the third part basically explores the options we can take based on what we already know.

This book shows that he knows a lot within his area of expertise. I'm not joking because he does back up his opinions with a lot of research. He also explains the concepts in a clear and coherent way.

I would recommend anyone to buy this book.
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on 8 October 2012
This book is not just food for thought - it's a banquet that's packed with some shocking and even more penetrating insights, together with the facts that back them up. As Neils Bohr remarked of Quantum Mechanics "if you're not profoundly shocked by it, you haven't understood it yet".

No one knows it all - I already knew that. But after 30 years tracking the latest technology and the impact of the Internet on humanity it's rare to be either shocked or even surprised. I'm almost through my first reading of "Bank To The Future" (I will need to read it at least twice more I think) and I'm both.

I'm no economist. I understand the impact and potential of Internet technology - and that the human race has been co-evolving with it for more than two decades now - but Simon's ability to put it all together with it's impact in the financial realm, and the impact of that on us all (now in our current rolling-crisis and into the future), is breathtaking even so.

Yet he's not just a pundit or an activist he's at the forefront of the most potent and exciting wave yet, which combines both revolutions and has the potential to not just dig us out of the deep, deep hole we are now in but to permanently change work, finance and our whole world. (He's at the forefront of Crowdfuning with BankToTheFuture.com in case you didn't already know).

Crowdfunding is a tidal wave. Not waiting to happen but already detectable, mappable and inevitable. Here is the map.

In a word: Phenomenal!
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on 2 August 2012
Simon Dixon manages to navigate lucidly, in plain English, through the history of banking, its failings and the wholly inadequate attempts by governments to regulate the industry. It is the mark of a profoundly knowledgeable man that he has no need to hide behind jargon. Simon never does. As an economist by training, and with an investment banking background, he would have been forgiven if occasionally he did. I enjoyed the book in one sitting.

The book surveys the nature and implications of the fundamental change technology is bringing not just to banking, but to business in general. It argues that society is inexorably moving away from an employment economy to one based on entrepreneurship.

Simon shows why our debt-driven banking system is doomed and is in need of a radical overhaul. As a former old-school international banker I wholeheartedly agree with his reasoning. I loved his narrative device, borrowed from the film `Back to the Future', of going back to 1844, when the foundations of modern banking legislation were being laid. He examines whether, if certain changes had been introduced then, these might have prevented today's crises (they would have).

`Bank to the Future' is a solutions oriented book which shows how seven technological developments in particular, which the author refers to as "hugely disruptive" (to business as usual!), are side-stepping the traditional role of banks. This is making it possible for funding to reach people whose needs are either too small or too risky for conventional lending institutions, and who typically don't have access to any form of banking.

He postulates what the four essential criteria for good banking practice are, and shows how current practice invariably fails on all counts. His solution is the creation of the social network banktothefuture.com, which will enable person to person lending and crowd-funding.

The book offers a lucid argument for the development of one's personal social capital. Simon is the first writer I have encountered who makes such a clear case for the importance of developing a coherent personal social media strategy.

Highly recommended ... to anybody trying to understand where we are headed in these turbulent, but exciting, times.
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on 22 April 2012
When the Governor of the Bank of England admits that our current banking system is the worst possible system we could have, you know that banking is in crisis.

In Part 1 of his book, Simon Dixon proposes 3 banking reforms which would convert a turbulent, unsustainable system into a sustainable one that works for the country as a whole instead of a minority in the South East. He illustrates the effects of implementing these reforms on historical economic events using non-technical, jargon-free language. This empowers the non-bankers and non-economists amongst us to participate intelligently in this debate, armed with new-found knowledge.

In Part 2 of his book, he describes the convergence of seven "disruptive" global technologies which are irreversibly changing our relationship with banks and with money. This is an emerging trend which is set to gain speed rapidly. Read the book to find out what this means for you, your loved ones and your businesses, if you have any.

The author concludes that when the banks are ready, they will have to reform. The system is broken, it has to be fixed and bandages won't work. In the meantime, there's a different game in town - the world is in the process of a huge transition, full of exciting opportunities...
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on 30 May 2012
Bank to the Future: Protect Your Future Before Governments Go Bust

I read this book from cover to cover in one sitting - I have never done that.

The author promises to explain the current failures and solutions to our current banking crisis without using financial jargon. He doesn't fail to deliver.

Simon Dixon outlines that incredible opportunities that the new "7 hugely disruptive technologies" bring to us all, but also the current threats that we all live with - a financial and banking system that is desperately in need of reform.

The author does this in an clever and informative way, weaving interactive features that allow the reader to debate the issues. Simon Dixon is clearly an author who is geniune, passionate and knowledgeable about his message.

This book makes me think and care and take positive action. This is a must read for anyone who wants understand finance, technology and money and wants to protect themselves and their loved ones for the turbulent times ahead.

If this is the authors intention he has succeeded.

Steven Harbour
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on 3 August 2012
This is an extraordinary book about the financial times in which we live. I'm not a banker, but my gut instinct and common sense tell me that Simon has nailed the problems of a financial system that has forgotten about being a service industry and become a self-serving industry. It's scary stuff, but the great thing is that there is an alternative to the insanity we've created for ourselves.

The book itself is written in a straightforward way and I couldn't put it down. Simon clearly knows his stuff and is passionate about getting across the message that we need to change.

I would quibble with the early part of the book way in which he outlines how we can become almost self-sufficient in the workplace, becoming a jack-of-all-trades. I'd argue that we should concentrate on what really makes us tick and delegate functions where we procrastinate or generate poor results through lack of interest or lack of core skills. But that's a small niggle in the overall context.

Buy the book! Unless you're a banker keen to hang onto a possibly undeserved bonus, I doubt that you'll regret it.
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on 21 September 2012
This book was in my pile of holiday reading. Quite simply I could not put it down. I read it from cover to cover and found it compelling reading.

Simon has got our financial crisis nailed. He communicates in an easy to understand style, which works for those who know nothing about finance and also for those who do. I'm an accountant, and some of the stuff in this book was quite an eye opener for me. After telling us how it is, Simon outlines his vision for the future and leaves the reader in no doubt that he is committed to working and influencing in order to achieve it.

Reading the book has introduced me to crowdfunding - a totally new (to the UK) form of business financing. I am so interested in this concept that I altered my working schedule to go and listen to Simon speak at a conference this week. He is a man who truly walks his talk.

Buying, reading and acting on the advice in this book is highly recommended. Bank to the Future: Protect Your Future Before Governments Go Bust
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on 22 April 2012
Simple steps to follow to get out of this recession & protect yourself from the future ones which if the Banking system doesn't change, as Simon rightly puts in his book is inevitable to happen again & again. So, what really is wrong with our Banking system & treasury policies? Who creates money, how is it circulated, who benefits? All that & more in a 'financial jargon-free' language. Afterall, we all have the right to know that why we are in this same situation every 10-15 yrs & what is our hard earned money spent on? Simon talks about how it can be changed if the decision makers wanted to. But why don't they is a topic for another book i guess? So if they won't change, what can we do to protect our future? Simple 7 disruptions that could make us independent of Banks & Govts. Some of which you might already know about but its seeing it in a different light that makes it believable & most importantly achieveable. A must read for Gen Y.
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on 5 April 2012
I have to say when I started reading the book, I didnt want to put it down. It is very well written highly interactive and fun read even for the not so financially savy individuals. The author does very well explaining the current banking/financial system without using much financial jargon and what reforms need to take place to create a financial system that works for everyone.

The disruptive technologies mentioned in the book are very much in use at the moment, some of them widely used some of them not so. The book places a speacial emphasis on how these technologies could eventually lead to a world where we dont have to rely on governments or employers for our money. If you want to create a sustainable future for yourself and people around you this book for you because it will prepare you for the road ahead. Read this book to understand Finance, technology and money and how to use them.... It is a must must read!!
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